I'm so excited about the opportunity to blog about working moms. Melissa, thank you so much for making this happen. This is a subject I am passionate about. It's also a subject that doesn't have a chapter in our employee handbooks. Wouldn't it be great if there were a handbook for working moms and stay at home moms? I know both are very tough to navigate. (I had 3 months off for maternity leave and I will say most days at home were tougher than my mornings at work.)
My name is Natalie. I'm wife to a really great guy, Frank. Momma to a 1 year old, red head, Hays. And I work in TV News.
My day starts at 2:30am. Yes, 2:30 in the morning. I am a meteorologist for a mornings news show. I love my job. It gives me the best of both worlds. I'm a full-time employee... and pretty much a full time mom.
Exhausting? I can't even begin to tell you....
Here's what our day looks like:
2:30am- I wake up, get my stuff together, kiss my husband good-bye and say a prayer outside my son's door.
3:00am- Arrive to work (in my pajamas), read over emails, and get ready for the days show. Most mornings I apply two separate under eye concealers. HD is a curse =)
My day is full of a 2 hour show, 2 hours worth of cut-ins, and 2 hours worth of meetings and catching up on stories or emails.
BY 11am- I'm home ready to start my favorite part of the day.
I catch up all of the morning info from Hays' babysitter. He may be awake or he may be a sleep when I get home. I never know.
We eat lunch, play a little bit, and head to the gym. Some afternoon's I have appearances or school visits, and if I do. Hays usually is with me.
4:00pm-We cook dinner and eat early. Spend family time with dad. And I start getting ready for bed around 5pm.
7:00pm- I'm snuggling with my boys about to wipe out for the night.
I've been a working momma for 10 months. I am no expert, but, here's what works for us.
1. Set priorities. Hays has a set bedtime @ 7:30pm. Most nights we don't deviate. This allows for me to put Hays to sleep by myself in case my husband isn't able. Nap time isn't something I can micromanage so I let it go.
2. Ask for help. My husband is A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. We have a partnership. He does laundry, cleans the floors, feeds our son dinner, gives him baths, and puts him to sleep. I'm not the only one in charge of the household chores and I couldn't be more thankful to my husband.
3. Learn to say NO! Before baby I would do just about any event I was asked to do. Now, if it's not baby friendly or something I am passionate about, I pass. My family is my priority and I want them to know that. Time with my husband is few and far between. During football season, time together is non-existent. We've had to take a break from church small groups or other volunteering positions because our time as a family is so valuable.
4. Find a babysitter/nanny/childcare you trust. We are blessed to have a babysitter come to our home. It puts our minds at ease that our son is in an environment that he knows and he can stay in his PJ's for as long as he wants. If you like the sound of that, do your research. You may be surprised to find that an in-home nanny might be more cost effective than a daycare. (It is for us!) Our nanny has a baby 9 months older than Hays. It's great for the socialization aspect.
5. Find ways to make your life easier. I've stared freezing meals. If I make lasagna, I freeze half for a meal later. Some evenings this is a lifesaver! When Hays was starting to eat baby food I was ambitious and made it all. For me, my time is too precious to spend all of it in the kitchen. Now, we buy it.
6. Pray. Alot. At times you’ll be overwhelmed. Or you might feel guilty. Knowing the Lord has it under control when I don’t sets my mind and heart at ease.